Neil Simon’s Memoirs Hits Bookstores Today

News   Neil Simon’s Memoirs Hits Bookstores Today
The Tony and Pulitzer winner has been one of Broadway's most successful playwrights since 1961.
Neil Simon
Neil Simon

The complete memoirs of playwright Neil Simon is released November 8 by Simon & Schuster, featuring a new introduction by actor Nathan Lane and afterword by Simon’s wife, actor Elaine Joyce.

The Tony and Pulitzer winner was one of Broadway's most successful playwrights for nearly 40 years, with a Broadway career that lasted from 1961 to 2002 and included The Odd Couple, Plaza Suite, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Lost in Yonkers, and the librettos to Sweet Charity and Promises, Promises. His name appeared on a Broadway marquee most recently in 2010, with the Kristin Chenoweth revival of Promises, Promises. Simon still makes his home in New York with Joyce.

Titled simply Neil Simon’s Memoirs, the new edition of Simon’s autobiography combines his two previously published memoirs, Rewrites and The Play Goes On, into a single volume that spans his extraordinary career in theatre, TV, and film. According to publisher's notes, “Rewrites takes Simon through his first love, his first play and his first brush with failure. There is the humor of growing up in Washington Heights (which inspired his play Brighton Beach Memoirs) where, despite his parents’ rocky marriage and many separations, he learned to see the funny side of family drama as when his mother screamed thinking she saw a body on the floor in their apartment. (It turned out to be the clothes his father discarded in the hallway after a night of carousing.) He describes his marriage to his beloved wife Joan, and writes lucidly about the pain of losing her to cancer. The Play Goes On continues his life’s story, as he wins the Pulitzer Prize [for Lost in Yonkers] and reflects with humor and insight on his tumultuous life and meteoric career.”

He was named a Kennedy Center honoree in 1995 and won the Mark Twain Prize for American humor in 2006. He also won a special Tony Award in 1975 for his “contribution to theatre.”

Here is a survey of Simon’s stage plays and screenplays, along with the years they were produced on Broadway or released as films (except where otherwise noted). The current TV series The Odd Couple is based on his 1965 Broadway play of the same title.

(original productions on Broadway, except where otherwise noted; revivals not included:)

Come Blow Your Horn, 1961
Little Me, 1962
Barefoot In The Park, 1963
The Odd Couple, 1965 (Tony Award for Best Author [category discontinued])
Sweet Charity, 1966
The Star-Spangled Girl, 1966
Plaza Suite, 1968
Promises, Promises, 1968
Last of the Red Hot Lovers, 1969
The Gingerbread Lady, 1970
The Prisoner of Second Avenue, 1971
The Sunshine Boys, 1972
The Good Doctor, 1973
God's Favorite, 1974
California Suite, 1976
Chapter Two, 1977
They're Playing Our Song,1979
I Ought To Be In Pictures, 1980
Fools, 1981
Little Me (revised version), 1982
Actors and Actresses, (regional only) 1983
Brighton Beach Memoirs, 1983
Biloxi Blues, 1985 (Tony Award, Best Play)
The Odd Couple (female version), 1985
Broadway Bound, 1986
Rumors, 1988
Lost In Yonkers, 1991 (Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award for Best Play)
Jake's Women, 1992
The Goodbye Girl (musical), 1993
Laughter on the 23rd Floor, 1993
London Suite, (Off-Broadway) 1994
Proposals, 1997
The Dinner Party, 2000
45 Seconds From Broadway, 2002
Oscar and Felix: A New Look at the Odd Couple (Los Angeles) 2002
Rose’s Dilemma (Off-Broadway) 2003

Sean Hayes and Kristin Chenoweth in <i>Promises, Promises</i>
Sean Hayes and Kristin Chenoweth in Promises, Promises Joan Marcus


*Come Blow Your Horn,1963
After the Fox, 1966
Barefoot In The Park, 1967
The Odd Couple, 1968
*Sweet Charity, 1969
The Out-Of-Towners, 1970
Plaza Suite, 1971
The Last of the Red Hot Lovers, 1973
The Heartbreak Kid, 1973
The Prisoner of Second Ave, 1975
The Sunshine Boys, 1975
Murder By Death, 1976
The Goodbye Girl, 1977
The Cheap Detective, 1978
California Suite, 1978
Chapter Two, 1979
Seems Like Old Times, 1981
Only When I Laugh, 1981
I Ought To Be In Pictures, 1982
Max Degan Returns, 1983
Lonely Guy, (adaptation), 1984
The Slugger's Wife, 1984
Brighton Beach Memoirs, 1986
Biloxi Blues, 1988
The Marrying Man, 1991
Lost In Yonkers, 1992
Jake's Women, 1995
The Odd Couple II (1998)

*Motion pictures not written by Simon but based on his stage plays

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